Russian nuclear submarine which sank 30 years ago ‘leaks cloud of radiation’

Rob Waugh
The submarine sank in 1989 (Getty)

A Russian submarine which sank in 1989 is still leaking radiation - with a remote submarine spotting a ‘cloud’ of material leaking out of a ventilatoin duct.

The wreck of the Komsomolets lies on the bottom of the Norwegian Sea at a depth of about 5,577 feet.

The Soviet-era nuclear submarine sank in April 1989 after a fire broke out on board.

An inspection with a remotely operated vehicle called Aegir 6000 was the first to film the wreckage - spotting the ‘cloud’ of debris.

The Norwegian Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority said that radiation levels are 800,000 times higher than normal - but still pose no risk.

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Expedition leader Hilde Elise Heldal said, ‘This is of course a higher level than we would usually measure out at sea but the levels we have found now are not alarming.

'What we have found during our survey has very little impact on Norwegian fish and seafood.

'In general, caesium levels in the Norwegian Sea are very low, and as the wreck is so deep, the pollution from Komsomolets is quickly diluted.'

The radiation poses no threat because there are few fish at that depth, and the radioactivity ‘thins out’ due to the depth of the ocean.

Scientists will continue to examine the samples.

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